Caring for Your 3A Hair: Tips, Tricks, and Products for Beautiful Curls

3A hair type dominates. Recent research reveal that 25–30% of the population possesses the 3A curl pattern, making it one of the most common curl patterns. Three-a hair features beautiful, medium-volume curls. Frizz, dryness, tangling, and product buildup plague hair type 3A.

The right products and styling can keep curls healthy, defined, and hydrated. In this piece, we’ll explore 3A hair, including its challenges and the finest products and styling methods. Thus, whether you’re a curly hair novice or an expert, this guide has all you need.

What is 3A hair type?

3A Hair
Photo: Cosmopolitan

The 3A hair type categorization system defines curly hair texture and pattern. Andre Walker, a hair care specialist and stylist, classified hair types from Type 1 (straight) to Type 4 (curly) (coily hair). 3A hair has medium-sized, well-defined, bouncy curls. Large curls twist and turn in a whirl. Hair has volume and gloss. Without proper care, 3A hair can frizz.

This can be fine to medium and wavy or curly. This hair is versatile and can be straight, curly, or wavy. If you want to control your curls and avoid frizz, apply lightweight, moisturizing treatments for this hair because it’s so fine. Finally, this hair requires specific care. Use the right products and techniques to get stunning, healthy curls.

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How to Keep Type 3A Hair Healthy

Maintaining adequate hydration, acquiring the appropriate styling skills, and styling with products that are gentle on the hair are the three components of the 3A hair care routine. A few pointers on how to keep your hair type 3A healthy and beautiful:

Hydrate regularly

Because this hair is prone to frizz, retaining moisture is extremely important for the care of this hair type. With the assistance of a moisturising conditioner or leave-in conditioner, you are able to keep the smoothness and hydration of your hair at a consistent level.

Detangle gently

After washing and conditioning your hair, the most effective method for detangling it is to use either a comb with wide teeth or your fingers to go through the knots in your hair. It is in your best interest to avoid brushing your hair because doing so might promote split ends and frizz.

Use a diffuser

A diffuser is an attachment that can be added to a hair dryer in order to assist disperse the heat evenly and ensure that your curls remain smooth and defined while they are drying. When blow drying your hair, use a diffuser and a low heat setting to prevent your hair from the damaging effects of heat styling.

3A Hair
Photo: Reddit

Use products specifically for curly hair

See if you can find anything that says “for curly hair” or “for 3A hair” directly written on it. Because they were designed with curly hair in mind from the beginning, products like these will help your curls maintain their shape and position.

Avoid excessive heat styling

Reduce the frequency with which you use flat irons, curling irons, and blow dryers to avoid damaging your curls and causing frizz. It is recommended to apply a heat protectant spray and a low heat setting while using heat styling tools.

Avoid using heavy or greasy products

Avoid using any oils or silicones that are very thick or oily since they will cause your curls to become less defined. Instead, use treatments that are light and moisturizing, such as coconut oil or argan oil, to keep the bounce in your curls and ensure that they remain healthy.

Sleep with a satin or silk pillowcase

By sleeping on cotton pillowcases, you run the risk of causing damage to your curly hair, which can result in frizz and breakage. Use a satin or silk pillowcase to ensure that your curls do not become harmed while you sleep and that there is no frizz.

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How You Can Style 3A Hair

3A Hair
Photo: The Mestiza Muse
  • When you wash your hair, you should use shampoo and conditioner that are designed for curly hair.
  • Untangle your hair using a comb with wide teeth or your fingers while it is still moist and conditioned.
  • Apply a leave-in conditioner to your hair, as well as a product that helps define curls, and see what kind of results you get.
  • First, remove excess water from your hair by gently squeezing it, and then use a microfiber towel or an old T-shirt to lightly scrunch your hair to remove any remaining moisture.
  • Scrunch your hair upwards or use the diffuser attachment that comes with your hair dryer to achieve curls that are more defined.
  • When your hair is completely dry, use a holding spray to give it a light misting and help the curls last longer.
  • Staying away from your freshly curled hair with your hands is the most effective approach to preserve them in the shape you worked so hard to achieve.
  • By sleeping on a silk or satin pillowcase, you can protect your hairstyle and keep it from becoming damaged.

Which Products Work Best with Type 3A Hair?

Products that give definition and moisture are appropriate for type 3A curly hair, which has a definite “S” pattern and a medium degree of volume. This type of curly hair may be identified by its medium degree of volume. If you have hair of type 3A, you should try the following products:

  • Leave-in conditioners and moisturizing products
  • Curls can be defined and held in place with the help of certain products (curl creams and gels).
  • Utilizing oils such as coconut oil and argan oil are great ways to enhance shine and retain hydration in the hair.
  • Products that do not contain silicone in order to avoid accumulation.

It is important to keep an open mind because not everyone with 3A hair would benefit from the same procedures. It is in your best interest to try out a variety of products until you discover one that is tailored to the unique needs of your hair type.

Also See: From Tight Curls to Loose Waves: The Different Types of Perms Explained

How Often Should You Wash with Type 3A Hair?

The number of times per week that you should wash your 3A hair depends on a variety of things, including as the products that you use, the degree of oiliness that your scalp has, and the level of intensity of your daily routine. The following are some general tips about the washing of 3A hair.

  1. Every two to three days: For those with type 3A hair and a little oily scalp, three days can pass before another wash is necessary. The usage of a dry shampoo during this period might help to remove the buildup of oil and revitalize your curls.
  2. Once a week: If your hair type 3A is dry, you should probably limit the number of times per week that you wash it to prevent over-depleting your hair of its natural oils.
  3. As needed: It’s possible that you’ll need to wash your hair more regularly to remove the buildup that can occur if you lead an active lifestyle or use a lot of styling products.
  4. Experiment: Because the hair of each person is unique, you might need to try a few various washing routines before you find the one that works best for your 3A hair type.

When you wash your 3A hair, you should do it using a shampoo that is gentle, sulfate-free, and formulated specifically for curly hair. In order for curls to be in good shape, they require moisture and special attention, thus conditioning is vital. In addition, you should steer clear of washing your hair with too hot water because doing so might strip your hair of the protective oils it naturally produces and cause it to split.

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What are Some Common Challenges with 3A Hair?

3A Hair
Photo: Naturally Curly

The challenges of caring for and styling 3A hair type, which is characterised by distinct curls of medium volume, have been well-documented. The 3A curl pattern can be described as follows: The following are some of the problems that are frequently experienced by people who have hair type 3A.


When the air is humid, those with the 3A type have a greater chance of experiencing frizz. Use a curl-defining product in conjunction with a leave-in conditioner to calm unruly cuticles and reduce the appearance of flyaways.

Lack of definition

Curls can appear limp and lifeless if there isn’t enough definition in them. In order to give definition to your curls, use a product that is formulated to reinforce curls, then scrunch your hair upward.


It’s possible that dryness in 3A hair may make it more prone to breakage and will speed up the process of developing split ends. Maintaining the moisture level of your hair requires consistent use of both a leave-in conditioner and a deep conditioner.


If you have 3A hair, you are well aware of how easily it may become tangled, particularly when it is damp. To prevent hair from breaking, it is best to untangle damp hair using your fingers or a comb with wide teeth before applying conditioner.

Product build-up

Styling products that are too thick or too heavy can weigh down 3A hair quickly. Use lightweight products and frequent clarifying shampoo washes to prevent product buildup.

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